The Wonderful World Of Tetras And How Best To Keep Them

Many different tetra species are popular in aquariums, including the well-known Neon tetra (Paracheirodon innesi) and Cardinal tetra (Paracheirodon axelrodi), as well as rarer species such as the Congo tetra (Micralestes interruptus) and Serpae tetra (Hyphessobrycon eques).

All tetras are found in a family named Characidae in the order Characiformes. They are comparatively small fishes and many species are popular due to their striking coloration.

The Neon tetra is one of the most popular fish species among novice aquarists since it is sturdy, adaptable and will stay smaller than 2 inches (5 centimetres).
It is also beautiful and will add colour to the aquarium with its vibrant blue and red colouration. Using a dark substrate is a way of making this fish look even more stunning.

Another reason behind the popularity of this fish is its peaceful and non-aggressive temperament that makes it suitable in any peaceful community aquariums.

The Neon tetra should never be kept alone since it is a schooling fish. Get at least ten Neon tetras, preferably even more. They will also look much more stunning when they can form a big school in the aquarium, and since they feel less stressed and frightened in a group they will spend more time out in the open.

The Neon tetra is a South American Tetra native to warm rivers in Peru, Colombia and Brazil. The water temperature in your aquarium should therefore be in the 22-25 degrees C range if you want your Neon tetras to thrive.

Your Neon tetras will do better in a planted aquarium than in a barren tank. Sturdy plant species like Java fern can usually be kept even by very inexperienced aquarists. Artificial plants are another alternative that will provide your Neon tetras with a sense of security.

Ideally use both substrate plants and floating plants in your Tetra aquarium. The floating plants will dim the aquarium light and thereby make the fish feel safer.

As mentioned above, it is an adaptable fish and it can live in acidic as well as slightly alkaline water, from pH 5.5 to pH 7.5. Feed this fish a high quality flake food suitable for tetras, and make sure not to over feed your fish since obesity will seriously harm their health.

If you want to try a more unusual tetra you can for instance choose the Congo tetra. The Congo tetra is not as commonly known as the extremely popular Neon tetra and is usually kept by more experienced aquarists.

The Congo tetra will require a more active keeper than the Neon tetra; the water must for instance be changed very often since the Congo tetra is sensitive to high levels of soluble waste.

The Congo tetra will do best in an aquarium with strong circulation. Keep the water temperature from 23 to 26 C and the pH in the 6.0 to 7.5 range. Even though your Congo tetra will tolerate a pH above 7.0, it is recommended to keep the water slightly acidic, since this will make the Congo tetra less sensitive.

This tetra is native to the Zaire River basin where the water is quite soft, but it can adapt to harder waters in captivity. Always keep a school of at least five Congo tetras together.

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How To Breed Betta Fish During The Winter Without Sending Your Power Bill Through The Roof.

Betta Fish or Betta Splendens are a small fish that naturally can be found in the warm tropical areas of South East Asia and as such require warm water if kept in your home aquarium. Therefore most breeders of Betta Fish who live in climates with cold winters and hot summers choose to breed them during the summer as the demands of keeping the water warm are much less.

So if you have ever been interested in breeding Betta Fish and have always put it off because it’s too cold for half of the year then think again. There are simple, inexpensive ways to construct a Betta Fish breeding area that will decrease your electricity needs and still keep your Bettas nice and warm in an environment that makes them happy to breed.

So first of all, if your summer climate is ideal for breeding Bettas then why would you want to breed during the coldest part of the year anyway? Well for a start, breeding Betta Fish is an indoor activity. So if you like to get out and about and enjoy the outdoors during the summer then having a breeding tank full of Betta fry, that are dependant on you for their survival, may inhibit your lifestyle. After all most people do like to take their holidays during the summer. During the winter though it is mostly cold and miserable outside so having an indoor activity to keep you busy may be just the thing to get you through the winter. Another great reason for breeding Betta Fish during the winter is that if you are the only breeder in your area breeding during this time then you won’t have as much competition when it come to selling your Bettas.

So you can see there are advantages in breeding during the winter, so now the question is how to go about it without sending your power bill through the roof.
Well if you live in a climate where the temperature drops well below freezing during the winter then you will probably already be heating your house 24/7. Therefore keeping a breeding room warm shouldn’t be a problem as you are already heating your house. On the other hand though, if you live where the overnight temperature drops to only about 0 degrees Celsius then you’ll probably only be heating your house for a few hours a day. This is the situation where you will have to supply specific heating for your Betta Fish breeding area and this is also where you will need to be careful that it doesn’t become too much of a burden on your power consumption.

So instead of heating a whole room, why not build a cabinet for your breeding tanks that is insulated and can be enclosed to keep the heat in. Now the great thing about this is you can do it inside a room in your house or if you have a garage with some spare space then you can even do it there as well. Therefore what you will discover is when you heat the water in your tanks the radiated heat from the tanks is not lost but trapped inside the cabinet. This warmth inside the cabinet then greatly lessens the demand on you aquarium heaters and as such will reduce your power consumption.

Therefore your next challenge will be lighting the inside of your cabinet. After all you can’t keep your Bettas in the dark. Luckily though these days low energy light globes are now fairly easy to source. These will consume a minimum of energy while still providing enough light. To increase the brightness inside of your cabinet you can also paint it with a white paint. This will allow you to use the lowest wattage light globe while still providing enough light for your Bettas.
Another consideration with placing fish tanks inside an enclosed cabinet might be condensation. If you leave the covers on your tanks this should not be a problem but if you forget one day you may have a problem. Therefore mount all your electrical connections on the outside of the cabinet. You might also consider using a water proof light. Another option might be to use water proof paint but if you set up your cabinet correctly condensation shouldn’t become an issue. Nevertheless it still doesn’t hurt to take it into account.

Therefore if you’ve ever considered breeding Betta Fish but decided not to because it was too cold, then think again. There are simple, inexpensive methods that are easy to set up and won’t send your power bill through the roof.

Baby Toys Overview Fisher-price Ocean Wonders Aquarium


The arrival of an infant is a life-changing circumstance, in particular for new parents. I remember when our baby girl Jaina was born, and how we were pleased and apprehensive all at one time. It was necessary for us to make sure to do everything the exact right way, to give our wee one the best possible start. Now, three children later, we are significantly more calm, though not any less fulfilled. All of our kids, Jaina, Louis and Olivia, are satisfied and well. To provide them the perfect start, we tried to be quite careful regarding the toys we purchased for them. Over the years, we’ve discovered that toys from industry mogul, Fisher-Price are among the safest and most fascinating we’ve encountered. One of the manufacturers baby toys we especially approve of is the Ocean Wonders Aquarium.

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0 stars

Primary Aspects:

This is an incredible toy aquarium with a variety of integral motions and noises that will amuse and fascinate any baby. We have also discovered that it’s perfect at soothing your infant to rest. The variety of sound effects offers falling rain, ocean waves and a babbling brook. The toy attaches without trouble on the side of a crib, but must be fastened inside the little one’s arm span, because all the excitement begins with a simple push of the blue button on the base. Afterwards, the child sees and hears an attractive variety of lights and sounds intended to relax her or him serenely to sleep.

Price: About $20.00 at US big-box outlets such as Home Depot

Product Description:

Even the pickiest baby is going to be calmed to sleep beside this toy. Your baby will see large and little fish and play a game of peek-a-boo with a charming crab. The selection of features embraces soothing, gentle music, wafting seaweed, soft lights and bouncy little bubbles. The toy features a remote control that permits parents to resume the display without interrupting the baby. There are 5 charming tunes, 3 aquatic sounds and a blend of all 8. It’ll play continually for 18 minutes. The toy will hook on nearly all ordinary cribs, and the battery is able to be changed out when it’s already hooked up. The Ocean Wonders Aquarium needs 3 C batteries, the remote control requires 2 AAA batteries. We propose that you always keep spares on hand, because our youngsters always took pleasure in hearing it when they were infants.

Additional Item Information:

It’s not hard to get your baby started on enjoying the classics, because the Ocean Wonders Aquarium incorporates music from Mozart and Bach. While the baby gets older, it becomes a simple matter to get rid of the mobile part, leaving just the tender music and a relaxing night light. This toy is suitable for children up to 36 months. After we first put it up for Jaina, she could not quit looking at it, yet shortly fell serenely asleep. As simple as that! Just don’t forget to reset it after 18 minutes, though you’re most likely not going to be required to. When looking for baby toys, make sure to keep in mind the Fisher-Price Ocean Wonders aquarium. Highly suggested.

Interior Design And Aquariums

Producing a great feeling room can be quite a challenge and involve many different factors from colours through to shapes. Creating atmosphere is the key to success, but the atmosphere must be the correct one for the room in question. There is no use in creating a nightclub vibe inside an office! For many people, being near water is extremely relaxing and with the use of aquariums, water can add a large variety of atmospheres and ‘feels’ to any room. By intelligently choosing lighting patterns, positioning of the tank and many more aspects, a specified feel can be achieved via the use of an aquarium. This article goes through a few of the feels that can be created by effectively using aquariums.


This is perhaps the most common use of aquariums; just being near water makes many people feel calm and peaceful in a way that is hard to compete with. Watching fish slowly moving around an aquarium can be very relaxing as it gives the eye something to watch without being over-worked at the same time. Using soft lighting schemes, backgrounds and furniture can also add a great deal to the effect. Aquariums are used to create this atmosphere in many settings from office blocks through to spa’s and health centres.


On the complete flip side of the coin, aquariums are becoming more and more popular as additions to nightclubs and bars. With a different approach to lighting aquariums can be easily transformed into exciting elements to any room, enhancing that feeling of excitement. Quite often, people don’t expect to see a fully occupied fish tank when entering a bar, adding a nice pleasant surprise, so it certainly adds to the whole experience…of course beating that of the competitor down the road. LED lighting is becoming increasing popular as a form of aquarium lighting, and this can really suit nightclub, bar and restaurant settings.

The Wow Factor

By choosing to have an aquarium custom designed for your setting, you open yourself up to an endless world of possibilities. Aquariums can be installed as walls, tables, ceilings…anything you can think of. The costs can get fairly hefty with extra-crazy designs however the chance to do something truly unique is often enough to justify the expense. For people who want to add the wow factor to their establishment there is possibly nothing better than an extravagant aquarium included within the design of the room.

Whatever the atmosphere you are looking to achieve, using an aquarium is a sure-fire way to go. Good luck and happy ‘vibe making’!

Freshwater Tropical Fish Aquarium Hobbyists Add Blue Bee Shrimp

How Freshwater Tropical Fish Aquarium Hobbyists Are Adding The Blue Bee Shrimp

According to wholesale tropical fish supplier Gary Smith, of East Coast Tranship, the Blue Bee shrimp is a species that is becoming quite popular with owners of small aquariums. The Blue Bee Shrimp is comparatively new to the shrimp hobby, having first been introduced around March 2008.

This shrimp can be many colors and is occasionally hard to get because it is caught in the wild and is just recently starting to be bred by hobbyists in significant numbers. The Blue Bee is a species found in freshwater streams in China. So far most all of the Blue Bee Shrimp obtained by hobbyists from the pet store trade are wild caught. However, since breeding has begun, captive bred specimens should not take long to hit the hobby shelves.

Breeding the Blue Bee Shrimp

Successful breeding has been reported in a pH range of 6.5 to 6.8 with a temperature of 74 Fahrenheit. These parameters are very similar to the factors required for the Crystal Red Shrimp or Bee Shrimp. Since this is a close relative of those two species, Gary recommends that the same care should be applied to the Blue Bee Shrimp.

Feeding the Blue Bee Shrimp

It is best to do feeding once per day. Only feed an amount of food that the shrimp can finish within 2-3 hours maximum. It is not good to feed in excess and have food sitting for too long. Overfeeding is a known cause of death and can also cause water quality issues. Because shrimp are scavengers in the wild, they will eat anything they can find and are not accustomed to a constant food source.

Most freshwater tropical shrimps are undemanding in their care requirements. They should be kept in a well-established aquarium with no predators. The most important factor for water parameter is stability and as long as none of the water parameters are in the extremes they should be happy and healthy.

Because of the shrimps non-aggressive manner and their algae-eating habits, they are also widely popular in natural/planted aquariums. If there is not enough algae present, foods intended for aquarium fish and invertebrates can be used as a supplement to their diet. Another fine supplement is vegetables that have been boiled just until they are soft.

There are a good number of other distinct and colorful species of shrimps that can bring interest to small aquariums such as the Black Crystal Shrimp, Red Cherry Shrimp and the White Spot Shrimp.

Keeping Cichlids And How To Breed African Cichlids

Many aquarists like you enjoy keeping cichlids in their fish tank because of their different shapes and vibrant colors. Before long, just having them in their aquarium is not enough, fish lovers want to breed cichlids on their own. In fact, cichlid breeding is an interesting process to watch because of their parental behavior and highly organized breeding activities. Cichlid breeding parental brood care falls into one of three categories: open brooding, cave brooding, and mouthbrooding.

Most African Cichlids are mouthbrooders. In other words, the female African Cichlid will hold the eggs in their mouth. First, you need to get your breeding colony. Often, when a female cichlid is ready to mate, all the male cichlids will turn very aggressive and will often fight over her. Or, if you have only a pair, the male may be too aggressive towards the one available female, resulting in stress and potential death. Instead, you may want to keep 3 females for every male in your cichlid tank. This will keep the males busy chasing multiple females and let the females a chance to recover from being chased when breeding.

The African Cichlids breeding colony will love to have a good environment with plenty of caves, rocks, shelves and crevices which they can choose as their territory and breeding ground. Don’t bother to put any aquarium plants as they will be removed by the cichlids. It is equally important to feed your African Cichlids well to get them into their breeding condition. Spirulina flakes and occasional earthworm are excellent quality food for your African Cichlids.

When breeding time comes, the male will chase after the female and it will do a mating dance which consists of shimmying in front of the female. The female will lay eggs and then pick them up in their mouth. The male will fertilize the eggs. This whole process is repeated many times until the female loses interest and the male will chase another breeding female and repeat the whole process again.

Those unfertilized eggs will be disposed of. The female cichlid will keep the fertilized eggs in her mouth until they are hatched. This process can take about three to five weeks.

To keep the baby African Cichlids alive, it is important to transfer the female to a smaller tank before the baby cichlids are born. If not, the adult cichlids will eat them. When babies are born, move the babies to a fry tank before the mother cichlid eats them.

For the baby cichlids, you can feed them with some fine powder form of flake food. Meantime, it is good to let the female cichlid recover its health before putting her back in the tank. Also, try to keep the babies with cichlids of the same size, lest they become food!

What To Feed Your Discus Fish

Just like people, discus fish thrive best on a varied diet. While the fish-breeders of yore used to rely only on live food, scorning flakes or pellets, the equation has changed today with dried foods becoming more and more nutritious, without running the risks of bacteria and disease that live food always carries.

Remember, young discus fish can be extremely greedy. They will leap at whatever food you give them, so resist the temptation to overfeed. When the fish grow older, they tend to eat much more slowly – grazing at their food much like cattle.

Another key to understanding a discus fish’s food habits is to know that the fish like their feed at mid water, or at the bottom. Rather than leaping to the surface, your fish may wait till the feed sinks to a suitable height for them to feed.

Here are some items that you can feed your discus fish to make sure that they are healthy, and provided with the requisite amounts of vitamins and proteins.

Flake food Research the best fish flake brands in your area, by talking to your fish dealer or any other aquarium enthusiast you happen to know. The better brands may be more expensive, but are also more nutritious. Soak and squeeze flake food to

Pellets and freeze dried As always, stick to quality brands. Another danger of low quality foods is that they may absorb water and expand, making your fish constipated

Brine shrimp A favorite with discus fish, this may be fed in either live or frozen form. The best thing about feeding brine shrimp to discus fish is that it enhances the fish’s color patterns due to the carotene in it. Defrost and rinse the frozen brine shrimp before feeding it to your fish.

Bloodworms The absolute runaway favorite with discus fish, this is also available either live or in frozen form. Frozen irradiated bloodworms on a daily basis will keep your fish happy, especially if they are being introduced to a new aquarium

Beef heart While the discus fish love beef heart, it can tend to foul up your aquarium especially if you overfeed. I suggest not to try this until you have got used to keeping discus fish.

Discus fry need highly frequent feeding – once every 4-5 hours is a good way to start. Mature discus will do fine on twice-a-day feeds, with bloodworm once a day and dry food for the other feeding.

What some people don’t know is that the right fish food can also keep your discus fish looking brighter in color, more pleasing to their owners as well as their visitors. So feed your discus fish well, and watch them grow in both size and vibrant as the years go by!

Gallon Aquarium Dcor

Gallon Aquarium Dcor

Decorating your 55 Gallon Aquarium is always a fun, thought out process with lots of different options. Depending on the different aquatic life you have in your aquarium can help you decide what dcor best fits your 55 gallon aquarium. As shown in the compatibility chart certain aquatic life cannot coexist with live plants. In this case your best option would be artificial plants. Plants provide a great living environment for the fish, as most fish love to hide within the plants, making the fish happier and more secure in your aquarium. Artificial plants are much easier to maintain in your 55 gallon aquarium, however they will not produce oxygen that real plants do to help with using up the nitrogenous waste fish give out. Real plants are harder to maintain and need as much focus as your fish do. They require certain types of nutrients and need to be trimmed of dead or decayed parts. Most real plants will need certain lighting requirements. Artificial plants hardly ever have to be replaced and if dirty you can easily take them out and clean them. They dont need nutrients or to be trimmed which make them the easier choice in your 55 gallon aquarium, as they already have a close resemblance to real plants. There are two kinds of artificial plants: Silk and Plastic. Both come in many different shapes, sizes, and colors. All fish can go with artificial plants but if you do choose to go the route of real plants, just remember certain fish as stated in the compatibility chart cannot coexist with real plants.

A good way to decorate your 55 gallon aquariums is by adding rocks and wood, however it serves a bigger purpose than just being decorative. It helps make the fish feel more at home since it resembles the environment fish come from. It provides a safe place for fish to breed, spawn, and hide. Wood can help lower the PH levels in your 55 gallon aquarium and aids in anchoring certain plants and ornaments. When choosing your rocks and wood keep in mind the size of your fish, you dont want to overcrowd the tank. If you have bigger fish in your tank you might want to get bigger wood and/or rocks but not as much of it, so they will be able to hide within the decor. There are a few different types of wood you can choose from to help decorate your 55 gallon aquarium. Recommended wood for your aquarium include: Driftwood (make sure its aquarium safe and not just for reptile tanks), Bogwood, Mopani Wood, and Malaysian wood. Recommended rocks include: Lace rock, Slate, Lava rock, Limestone, Sandstone, and Quartz.

Aquarium Ornaments are the most commonly used decorations for a tank. They come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and can really make an aquarium look amazing. Different types of ornaments range from castles to different multi colored coral. A commonly used ornament is ancient ruins or my personal favorite, ships. If your this is an aquarium for your kids or your letting your kid help you decorate it there a plenty of different ornaments that they would love. Disney characters such as Ariel and Nemo are adorable and a great idea for a childrens aquarium. With ornaments for your 55 gallon aquarium it all depends on what you like and its a lot fun to be creative and decorate.

Backgrounds for your 55 gallon aquarium can drastically change the way your aquarium looks. They colorful ones that really make the aquarium look whimsical. For a more natural look they have ones with the ocean, coral, rocks, and fish. If your going for the natural look they really do have some beautiful backgrounds you can put in your 55 gallon aquariums. Just keep in mind which fish you have in the tank because if you put a coral background in a tank with goldfish or non tropical fish it would look kind of out of place and funny. Before purchasing your 55 gallon aquarium background be sure to remember to measure the width and length of your tank. Some backgrounds come with some kind of adhesive or suction to attach your background to your aquarium. Either way, backgrounds are a good way to make your 55 gallon aquariums look amazing and really stand out.

Easy-to-care-for Freshwater Aquarium Fish

Freshwater aquarium fish are just as lovely and relaxing as their saltwater cousins, but are much easier to take care of. While a freshwater tank still has to be kept clean and in the right pH range, there is no salinity to worry about.

Some freshwater aquarium fish are easy enough for a young child to take care of. The best fish are not so sensitive to water quality, and so they make a good, hardy species for the family to enjoy. These popular species are also coldwater fish, meaning the aquarium will not need a heater.


Without a doubt, goldfish are the most popular freshwater aquarium fish. If cared for well, a goldfish will live about six to eight years. People have bred the ones with bright orange scales for hundreds of years. They cost as little as 25 cents each and produce a lot of waste relative to their size; so changing the water in the fish tank frequently is important to the fish’s health.


Domestic angelfish originate from species native to the Amazon River. Their flat, triangular shape is rather uniform, but breeders have produced a range of colors and patterns in their scales. Some have delicate flowing tails and fins while some are more compact.

Angelfish are sometimes known to eat very small freshwater aquarium fish, but in general, if there is enough artificial fish food supplied, an angelfish will not turn on his tank mates.

Neon Tetra

Tetra are very small fish; domestic tetras rarely grow bigger than an inch. But neon tetras have a bright stripe along the sides of their tiny bodies, giving them a big visual impact. They swim in schools, making their colors even more obvious.

Tetras originally came from South American waters. Tetra generally should not be put in a tank with other freshwater aquarium fish because they are liable to be eaten or bullied. They can live up to ten years in a home aquarium.

Betta fish

Betta fish are actually a large family, comprising many members beyond the popular red “Siamese fighting fish”. Siamese fighting fish have elaborate fins in red trimmed in blue, purple or green. Fish keepers say a male betta fish should never be kept in a tank with another male as they will fight. In general, the beta fish needs to be paired with fish that are too big for him to attack and do not have large fins.

The Purpose Of A Wave Maker Is An Aquarium

If you are planning to start a marine aquarium then you must be aware that there are a few things such as protein skimmers and wave makers which are absolutely necessary for your aquarium. This article is going to elaborate on the purpose of a wave maker in an aquarium. As well as provide some tips that can help you choose a wave maker for your aquarium.

Wave makers are basically water surge devices that are used in aquariums to produce waves that are similar to that of seas and oceans. These devices stimulate the water and allow water to be circulated in the aquarium which helps provide oxygen to the fish and invertebrates. Wave makers are especially helpful in a marine aquarium since lack of circulation can cause poisonous substances to grow in marine aquariums and wave makers eliminate any such problems. Wave makers also help deliver food to corals and other invertebrates that cannot search for food on their own.

Wave makers are units that allow you to connect power heads and pumps to the control unit. These control units provide options to control the speed and height of the wave. Good wave makers have features that can prevent damage to power heads and pumps and allow you to stimulate both day and night waves in order to mimic a natural environment. Features that allow you to choose from rolling, smooth and turbulent waves are required options in good wave makers. A good wave maker will also provide feeding modes that can help you feed your invertebrates. The cycle time for waves is adjustable in a good wave maker and this feature can help circulate water while removing dead spots that accumulate wastes inside your marine aquarium. Other advanced features may be available in wave makers that can prove beneficial if there is a requirement for those features in your marine aquarium.

Another type of device that is used to create waves is a switching current water director also known as SCWD. Switching current water directors use existing pumps to generate double directional movement in your marine aquarium. These units are beneficial to reef aquariums. A good SCWD will direct water incoming water flow to two alternative outputs and the device will switch alternatively depending on the incoming pressure of the water.

Power heads, timers and pumps are usually sold separately but it may be possible to get a package deal that has all the necessary components to make a wave maker fully functional.